MUMBAI: In another twist in the Sheena Bora murder case, bone samples of her charred body collected in 2012 were found by forensic experts to be not matching those obtained from the remains which were exhumed recently.
In related developments, the CBI today accepted the Maharashtra government's request to take over the probe in the sensational case even as a local court extended for another fortnight the judicial custody of accused Indrani Mukerjea, her former husband Sanjeev Khanna and driver Shyavar Rai. Forensic experts at BYL Nair Hospital here who submitted a 26-page report to Khar police station last week have expressed doubts that the bone samples received might have got mixed up and may not belong to Sheena Bora.
JJ Hospital had handed over the samples to Khar police last month, after which the evidence was forwarded to Nair Hospital. But the forensic team of the hospital, in its report pointed out that the bone samples do not match with those that had been collected by the Pen police in May 2012. The report says the remains collected in 2012 and the ones handed over to them by JJ Hospital "may not be the same".
Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis said his government decided to hand over the case to CBI as there are many angles to be probed including financial transactions involved. "Before we sent them (the Union government) a request to take over the investigation in the Sheena Bora murder case, we had informal conversations with central government officials and CBI officers. They have agreed to take up the probe in the case. The notification for the same might have been issued by now," Fadnavis told reporters.
"There are many angles that need to be probed in the case. We felt it would have been best if a central agency probed the murder as it would have all the resources required at its disposal," he said. He said that if required, the state government would be willing to help the CBI with manpower as had been done in the anti-superstition movement activist Narendra Dabholkar murder case.
In a surprise decision, the government last week decided to hand over the case to the CBI, after dragging for nearly 10 days on the "supervisory" role it assigned to former Mumbai police chief Rakesh Maria, who was removed from the post amid the probe in the case in which he had played an active role. Ahmad Javed, a DG-rank officer, was posted in place of Maria, who was promoted as DG (Home Guards).
Earlier in the day, the judicial custody of Indrani Mukherjea, Khanna and Rai till October 5 was extended after they were produced before a metropolitan magistrate court via video-conferencing. All the three accused, who are lodged in various jails in the city, could not be produced physically due to security reasons.